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Stilt Sandpiper

Calidris himantopus ORDER: CHARADRIIFORMES FAMILY: SCOLOPACIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

In its boldly barred breeding plumage, the Stilt Sandpiper is easily identified. In its gray nonbreeding plumage, it is much less distinctive and appears to be intermediate between a yellowlegs and a dowitcher.

ML Essential Set
Birds of North America Online

Appearance

Shorebirds
Shorebirds
Typical Voice

Adult Description

Medium-sized sandpiper. Long, greenish legs. Long neck. Long bill, drooped at the tip. White rump. Gray tail. Wings plain, without white stripe. Breeding plumage heavily barred on the underside, with dark blotches on the back, and chestnut cheek patch. Nonbreeding plumage all gray on back with lighter belly.

Immature Description

Juvenile similar to nonbreeding adult, but browner, with scaly back with light edges to feathers, and thin streaks on chest.

Range Map Help

Stilt Sandpiper Range Map
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Similar Species

  • Nonbreeding Wilson's Phalarope has entirely white underside, thinner, straight bill, and more active behavior.
  • Lesser Yellowlegs has mostly white tail, bright yellow legs.
  • Dowitchers have shorter legs, longer, straight bills, and a white triangle extending up the back.
  • Curlew Sandpiper has white wing stripe, more slender and more curved bill, and a darker tail.